Friday, 6 April 2018

The Power of “We” when Dealing with Infertility (Part 2 of 3 in “The Power of” Series)


If you have been trying to conceive (TTC) for any length of time then I know you can’t wait to say the words… “We’re pregnant”!  I’ve heard people laugh when a husband or wife has said these words and responded with some type of humorous remark about how they hoped the husband wasn’t pregnant or they’ve noticed the (pregnancy) beer belly on him, but didn’t want to say anything.  The reality is that it does take two to get pregnant!  Now, as a 3x Gestational Carrier (Surrogate) who has carried 5 children for 3 families dealing with infertility, I know it can take a lot more than 2 people to get pregnant, but you know what I mean.

There is actually a lot of power in the little two letter word “we”.  The University of California, Berkeley has done studies on the differences in couples who tend to use the words “we”, “our” and “us” versus those that use “I”, “my” and “you”.  Research showed that those that used pronouns such as “we” in their everyday lives behaved more positively towards each other and showed less physiological stress.  Those that used more “I’s” were found to be less satisfied and unhappy in their marriage.

So what does this mean for couples in life and in-fertility?  A LOT.... God designed reproduction and procreation among humans to happen between a man and a woman. It isn’t an “I” thing, it is a “we” thing. Successful marriages are those that make decisions together, decide on how to do finances together, spend time together, parent together and grow old together. The fertility journey can be a lonely road to begin with.  At the very least you want to be on the journey toward growing your family with your spouse, to feel like you are a team, a dynamic duo, who are joining forces together against infertility.

The use of “we” shows that you are in a partnership in life and in-fertility.  It shows that you are connected.  Although it is hard to say, “we are dealing with infertility”, it is easier to say than, “I am having a hard time getting pregnant”.  You aren’t alone, you get to stand together with your spouse for better or worse, in sickness and in health.

From now on pay attention to how you and your spouse talk.  Are you a “we” couple or are you an “I” couple.  The great news is that you can make positive changes in your relationship just by using a powerful two letter word more!  It isn’t just a change in how you talk, but how you think and eventually in how you do life together.

There shouldn’t be an “I” in Infertility.  From now on, there should only be a “We”.

Relationship Expert and 3x Surrogate, Tiffany Jo Baker spends her time helping couples birth their dreams and navigate the road and relationships well while trying to conceive.  Married for over 17 years to her polar opposite, yet best friend, together they have built a life and family based on faith, core values, humor and forgiveness.  She loves to laugh, eat french fries, find amazing deals and create new memories.

Tiffany Jo Baker MA, CLC
Couples Life & Fertility Support Coach (+3x Surrogate)
@TiffanyJoBaker IG/FB

Join my private Facebook group with tips, encouragement and community with TTC couples just like you 



P.S. Wouldn't it be amazing to have support, peace and a plan during your fertility journey?  As a 3x Surrogate and a Couples Life & Fertility Support Coach, I help couples birth their dreams and navigate the road and relationships well while trying to conceive.  Don't miss my Free Online Class "How to Try to Have a Baby Without Losing Your Man or Your Mind" where I share 5 Keys for a Strong Marriage & Smooth Journey While Trying to Conceive.  You can find the information for this class and more free resources, as well as all about my Couples Fertility Support Coaching Services at www.TiffanyJoBaker.com
Research information found in: http://news.berkeley.edu/2010/01/27/couple_we_ness/  

Monday, 19 March 2018

The Baby & Me 3 Year Guided Mindfulness Journal

Support the BABY & ME Journal over on KICKSTARTER

The importance of being mindful and seeing life in a more positive way is entirely underrated. Most of my life I walked around completely unaware of how negative I was about myself and life around me. But at some point after our first failed IVF, I decided that the way I was thinking, feeling, moving, eating and living just wasn’t working. I started to take small steps in making some dramatic changes in my life - everyone thought I had gone infertility mad, even my husband! 

Journaling is something I've done on and off since I was a little girl. As I grew up, so did my journals and they have been amazing to look back on. Through my eight/nine years of dealing with infertility, I have a few random unfinished DIY journals. Recording many different aspects of the journey - I suppose what I thought was important at the time. These helped me design a journal I could have really used over my long journey. Over the next few months, Baby & Me developed into a three year guided mindfulness journal for all types of journeys to parenthood and beyond. 
“THREE YEARS” I hear you screaming. “My (in)fertility journey surely isn't going to last that long?”

1: I truly hope not. 

2: I thought the same thing, but if I started this at the beginning of my journey I'd be finishing my THIRD journal this year. 

3: I’ve designed this journal to be used for all different types of journeys to parenthood. Whether you are trying to conceive naturally, using Clomid, IUI, IVF, FET, donor sperm/egg/embryos, going through the adoption process, taking a break, during pregnancy and beyond - I got you covered!

WHAT’S INSIDE:

*Over 365 Inspirational Quotes and Affirmations  

*Over 70 Prompts and Questions to….
Set, Maintain and Achieve Goals
Improve Mental Well-being
Create New Habits
Evaluate How & Whom You Spend Your Time With
Encourage Healthy Eating
Boost Positive Thinking 
Inspire Self Love
Support Fertility Health
Record Important Memories
Express Thoughts and Feelings about Future Family Life
And Reflect on the Everyday Moments  

*Space to record.....
The day, your mood, movements & clean eating habits. What vitamins and medications you’re taking and highlight important appointments, to-dos and make notes.

To be truly honest I started designing a positivity journal for myself, right before our last FET (Frozen Embryo Transfer) as somewhat of a distraction. Looking back over my five years of fertility treatment, starting a new creative project seemed something like an entrepreneur trend. But in reality it was a coping mechanism- just in case it didn’t work, at least I had something to focus on. This journal started out as a free printable (which it still is), but quickly evolved into something much bigger. I started to see the real value in the journal when I recorded a BFP from FET, only to have to start recording the emotions of an early miscarriage less than two weeks later. The small but poignant positive encouragement, helped me get through a rough time with a bit more grace. 

I must admit, becoming a more positive me was much harder than I ever imagined. You might find this as well, but remember that you’re dealing with decades of “negative” connections that have been embedded in the network of cells within your brain. So it’s going to take time - be patient and put in the work. Soon you’ll see the benefits in so many different areas of your life, including promoting physical and mental health, improving working memory, becoming more compassionate, building resilience and more.

Positive Thoughts, Positive Me.
If you'd like support in your journey or have any questions Let's Talk
Doing better means going bigger. Going bigger means more money. That’s where you come in. To produce this journals in the high quality that you deserve (and something that will last three years), we’re running a Kickstarter Project. By supporting the project you'll help to bring this journal to life and/or get your very own high-quality Baby & Me journal at a great price.

You can find out more about the journal and me at: 

Tuesday, 13 March 2018

Pregnant at 42 & the 7 steps I took to help me achieve my dream - Guest Post by Stephanie

March is a very significant month in my fertility journey.
I always reflect during the month of March about how fortunate I am and how far I’ve come in this journey.
In March 2012, I got pregnant for the very first time.  It was our second month trying to conceive – when I found out I was pregnant I was like, Holy cow! That was easy!
Little did I know.  Unfortunately, after my miscarriage and subsequent diagnosis of Diminished Ovarian Reserve I wised up and learned that my husband and I were among the 1 in 8 couples faced with infertility, and that infertility affects about 10% of the U.S. population. This is a higher percentage of the population than is affected with HIV.
But it’s not just an issue affecting the U.S.  According to the United Nations, global fertility has declined over the last few decades and has reached “unprecedented low levels.”  In 2015, the UN estimated that 46% (almost half) of the world’s population now live in countries with low levels of fertility, which includes all of Europe and North America, and many countries in Asia and Latin America/the Caribbean.  Another 46% (again, almost half) live in “intermediate fertility” countries, those that have experienced substantial fertility declines.
In developing countries the numbers are even higher, with infertility affecting an astounding 1 in 4 couples, according to the World Health Organization.
Those are some crazy ass statistics.
My story has a happy ending, though. In March 2013, I conceived my son through intrauterine insemination (IUI).  It was a month before my 43rd birthday.
A year after I was diagnosed with Diminished Ovarian Reserve, I got pregnant with my son. I was 42 years old.
my son Charlie and me, March 2016.
Yes, just a year later I defied the odds. I was an over-40 woman with Diminished Ovarian Reserve and who’d never had a baby before.  I was told I had less than a 2% chance of getting pregnant and having a baby with my own eggs.  I was told to have IVF using eggs from a donor if I wanted to have a child.
I did a lot to improve my chances of conceiving.  I was already living a relatively healthy lifestyle, but still found areas in my life where I could improve:

I cleaned up my diet, cutting out a lot of sugar and processed foods, eating more whole foods, fruits and vegetables, and cooking at home more than eating out.

I started taking a prenatal vitamin, calcium and vitamin D supplements.  Seems pretty basic but very effective in boosting my overall health.  I wasn’t taking a vitamin regularly.  I also researched natural supplements to improve fertility, and would have likely incorporated them had I not been so fortunate to get pregnant so quickly.  They have tremendous power in helping us achieve optimal health.

I read everything I could get my hands on to educate myself about women’s health, fertility, trying to conceive, and reproduction. This helped me learn how to track my cycles and learn about my own body.

I got my body moving, faithfully continuing my longstanding yoga practice, and seeking out additional forms of exercise.

I researched holistic remedies, including acupuncture, fertility massage and reflexology. The one that resonated most with me was reflexology, and a few months before I successfully conceived, began regularly working with a reflexologist.

I started going to bed earlier and reduced the stress in my life.  This is a hard one for lots of us.  Our society is so busy that oftentimes the only time we can get things done is at night, forcing us to stay up later and get less sleep. I noticed that when I went to bed earlier I slept better and I handled my stress better. I had also, a few months before I started trying to conceive, changed jobs and my new job was much less stressful.  I didn’t plan the job switch in anticipation of trying to conceive, most of us don’t have that luxury – but if you can find ways to manage stress in your job and your life, it will do wonders for your fertility journey.

I set my clear intention that I would be a mother.  Yes, there were times when I questioned whether or not it would happen for me.  But the mind is a powerful thing, and I never wavered from my steadfast intention and belief that my husband and I would be parents.

I know I’m one of the lucky ones – I reflect on this every day, especially in March. But it wasn’t just luck, it took a lot of effort, persistence and life changes.  I took some action, no matter how small, each day toward my intention of becoming a mother.





Stephanie Roth
Fertility Consultant & Coach


Le'ts connect!  
Find me on Facebook, InstagramPinterest and Twitter

Read my blogs: Your Fertile Self and B Fit, B Fertile, for Conceive Fertility Hospital

Tuesday, 6 March 2018

Infertility Leaving you Lonely and Isolated? The Power of “Who” - Part 1 of 3 - guest post by Tiffany


Why is it so important who is in your life?  Well, according to articles in the Huffington Post and Psychology Today, you can accurately predict where you'll be in life 5 years from now, simply by the company you keep and who you do life with.  The people you spend time with have a major influence on how you feel, think and behave! (Anyone else hear their mother’s voice in their head from when they were a teenager.  Well shoot… mom was right again!)

So how does this apply to couples in life and infertility?... A LOT... You have the power of choice, to choose the WHO's on your journey with you.  They will have a major influence on how you feel, what you think and what you do on the journey towards growing your family!

Here are the 4 major WHO's for your Fertility Journey:

1. Your Spouse! First of all, it is important that you marry the right WHO for you.  I'll assume that most of you are married and past this first point, but if not... I have worked with a lot of couples and singles and in my opinion, choosing a spouse is the most important decision you will make in your life. There should not be an “I” in infertility, there should only be a “we”.  You and your spouse should be united together towards growing your family.

2. Your TTC Tribe! On your path towards growing your family you get to choose who you invite into your tribe, your support system. I have talked to so many people who are OR who have dealt with infertility and most of them say they feel alone and isolated.  It can be such a secretive and lonely place, but it doesn't have to be.  It's important to have family and friends in your every-day life / in person that are able to support and encourage you along the way.  It can be hard to be vulnerable and share, BUT if you choose the right WHO and intentionally lead the relationship and conversations, it can be a huge blessing!

3. Your Professional Support Team! You get to choose the Doctors, Coaches (like me), Clinics and any Donors that you may work with.  I have heard some amazing stories of wonderful physicians, caseworkers, donors and such.  I have also heard and had some horror stories in my own journey as a 3x Surrogate. Do your due diligence and get referrals.  Some doctors are excellent in their field, but aren't the ooey-gooey bedside manner nice type.  Know what matters most to you.  Also know that if you get into it and it's not working for you, don't be afraid to change professionals.

4. Your MVP! Last, but not least, the most important WHO... is God.  Faith is crucial to your fertility journey and a relationship with God, the Creator of the Universe, will sustain you during the ups and downs!

So as you continue on this journey towards growing your family, don't do it alone.  You have the Power of Who! You get to choose the major WHO's in your life and infertility and they will help determine what you have in the future!

Relationship Expert and 3x Surrogate, Tiffany Jo Baker spends her time helping couples birth their dreams and navigate the road and relationships well while trying to conceive.  Married for over 17 years to her polar opposite, yet best friend, together they have built a life and family based on faith, core values, humor and forgiveness.  She loves to laugh, eat french fries, find amazing deals and create new memories.

Tiffany Jo Baker MA, CLC
Couples Life & Fertility Support Coach (+3x Surrogate)
@TiffanyJoBaker IG/FB

Join my private Facebook group with tips, encouragement and community with TTC couples just like you 



P.S. Wouldn't it be amazing to have support, peace and a plan during your fertility journey?  As a 3x Surrogate and a Couples Life & Fertility Support Coach, I help couples birth their dreams and navigate the road and relationships well while trying to conceive.  Don't miss my Free Online Class "How to Try to Have a Baby Without Losing Your Man or Your Mind" where I share 5 Keys for a Strong Marriage & Smooth Journey While Trying to Conceive.  You can find the information for this class and more free resources, as well as all about my Couples Fertility Support Coaching Services at www.TiffanyJoBaker.com

Thursday, 1 March 2018

Re-Think Your New Year’s Resolution: 5 Simple Steps to Setting Your Intention and Living Your Best Life - Guest Post by Rachel


Each year, when the clock strikes midnight on January 1st —  after one last round of kisses and champagne toasts —  it seems we go into full fledge panic mode. Why? The dreaded New Year’s resolutions. 

Suddenly, it’s that time of year again that we’re told we need to set some big goals for ourselves. You know, because it’s 2018 after all. 

Lose the last 10 pounds. 
Land a dream job. 
Ditch the carbs. 
Buy a house.
Go to the gym five times a week. 
Make more money. 

Sound familiar? Here’s the thing: these type of lofty goals based on what society says we “should” do actually don’t feel very good, as they’re not soul-centered. Not to mention, studies have shown that about 80% of resolutions fail by February! That’s right. They make you feel crappy and they don't work. 

Now that it's been two months, it's a good time we check in with ourselves! Whether you set a resolution at the beginning of the year or you're looking to get started, it’s time we re-think our resolutions in order to live our best lives in 2018 and beyond. Try these 5 simple intention-setting steps to get started!  

1. Ask Yourself How You Want to Feel
 Before you even begin to think about what you want to manifest in 2018, you need to get clear about how you want to feel. Do you want to feel free? Joy? Clarity? Abundant? Connection? Take out a journal and a pen and get down to business jotting down how you truly want to feel in the year ahead. Then, aim to narrow it down to one to three words that’ll really help set the tone for the year. 

Next, work on setting an intention based upon how you want to feel. For instance, if you want to feel free, singing up with Weight Watchers probably isn’t the best idea for you right now. But perhaps your intention is “Travel often and focus more time on my freelance business so I can leave my corporate job for good.” Bam! Notice the difference there? 

2. Stop Waiting
We have a habit of holding off on opportunities we want for ourselves until we get that thing i.e. Once I lose 10 pounds, then I can start dating again. Once I make more money, then I can launch that dream project. Once I fall in love, then I can be happy. Sound familiar? It doesn’t work like that! Rather than waiting for life to happen to us, we need to start living our lives! You can start dating again now. You can launch your dream project now. You can be happy now. Stop waiting for that perfect moment and do the thing now

3. Lean on the Universe For Help
I’m a firm believer that when you set an intention for yourself, you’re responsible for helping make it happen. But you don’t have to carry all the burden on your shoulders! Do your part, and then lean on the Universe for a little extra help when you need it. Whether it’s a new job or a baby you want to “conceive,” you can only do so much on your own and then it’s time to surrender and give up a little of the control. Ask for guidance from the Universe, listen to the signs, and trust the process...your time will come. 

4. Surround Yourself With Positivity
In order to truly live your best life ever in 2018, you’ll want to surround yourself with people, places and situations that radiate positivity. Take a long, hard look at the areas in your life filled with toxic, negative energy and think about how you can let some of that go. Now it’s time to fuel up with positive vibes! One of my favorite ways to do so is through positive affirmation cards, which I incorporate into my life daily. My Spark Your Bliss affirmation card deck is a perfect place to start, as each card includes a word, positive affirmation, action steps and journaling prompt to help you reflect. Learn more and score your own deck here! 

5. Make Self-Care a Priority 
When we’re focused on making sh*t happen, sometimes we put our own self-care practice on the back burner. However, this is the year we’re going to make self care a priority! One of my favorite quotes is, “You can’t pour from an empty cup.” Meaning, you can’t possibly make time for others and do all the things if you’re not taking care of yourself first. 

Don’t worry, self-care doesn’t have to be complicated, time-consuming or expensive! It could be as simple as making time for your favorite weekly restorative yoga class, meditating for 10 minutes in the morning, slathering yourself with an organic body butter infused with essential oils, cooking a nourishing meal, or booking a much-needed massage. Ask yourself what your body needs in order to feel its very best, and do more of those things. 


We’d love to hear from you! How do you want to feel in 2018? 



Rachel Kaczynski is a MA-based Certified Health Coach, freelance writer, and creator of "Spark Your Bliss" Affirmation Card Deck. She's the founder of Healthy Chicks (www.healthy-chicks.com), a wellness blog inspiring women to live happier, healthier, more vibrant lives (without dieting). Through 1:1 and group coaching, Rachel empowers her clients to ditch dieting and discover joy around food. 

When Rachel's not writing you can find her in search of the perfect cup of coffee, sipping on a green smoothie, teaching wellness workshops or taking a moment to herself on the yoga mat. 


Monday, 12 February 2018

Nurture Fertility Journal - Guest Post by Nicola

You know we loving journaling here at Fertility Health Coaching. But if you find that Baby&Me is too much of a commetment at this point in time, you should check out the Nurture Fertility Journal by: Nicola Salmon 

We are in an era of information overload. Wherever you look, there are a thousand and one different ways you can improve your fertility, but how do you know what works and what is just a waste of time and money?

Whether you are trying to work out what supplements to take, which foods to eat or how to reduce your stress, I bet you’ve felt “fertility FOMO” (FOMO = fear of missing out, we all like a good fertility acronym right?) at least once before. Maybe this one, will be “the one”?

So where do you start?

How on earth can you possibly decide what is going to work without a degree in medicine and 100 hours researching each option?

The good news is you don't need either of those things. What you do need is some curiosity and a willingness to try something different. 

Instead of DOing, we need more BEing.

Our bodies are incredible things. There are thousands upon thousands of different processes going on in our bodies every minute that we don't even have to think about. We don't have to tell our body to digest our food when we eat or increase our heart rate when we exercise. The body has the capacity to run and heal itself. 

When we start to listen to our bodies, something magical happens. All those annoying symptoms and aches become your bodies way of communicating with you. 

When you start to listen, you learn what foods, supplements and habits will help you live your healthiest life. This is where journaling becomes the best tool you can use.

You can start with a simple notepad and pen. Each day write down some simples things such as:
What and when you ate. (No calorie counting or judgement, just what it was)
What and when you drank.
How your energy varied throughout the day
How your mood varied throughout the day
When and how you moved your body
Any symptoms, aches, pains etc
Where you are in your menstrual cycle
How much sleep you got

With this information, you will begin to see patterns. They will be completely personal to you. Here are some examples

1 - You have trouble getting to sleep if you drink coffee at 5pm.
2 - Exercising in the morning makes your feel productive all day.
3 - You get a headache if you haven’t drunk enough water the day before.
4 - Your mood and energy will change depending on your cycle.
5 - You feel bloated in the afternoon after having milk on your cereal in the morning.

This information is priceless. It’s your personal instruction book to leading a healthy life.  

Once you get started with this practice, you will notice your body changing as you react to what it is telling you. Finally you'll have the power to make a difference in your health. 

Nicola Salmon is a fertility coach, acupuncturist and author of the Nurture Fertility Journal. She is dedicated to supporting women struggling to get pregnant and help them make the best decisions around their health and wellbeing. 

She has struggled with her own fertility issues and strongly believes that no-one should travel this path alone. Whatever your story, Nicola will support you to choose what is right for you and feel safe in the knowledge that you have made the best possible decision.